This is without a doubt the best dessert I have ever prepared.
This is the perfect dessert to serve guests for several reasons: Souffles are impressive (maybe not to a proffessional pastry chef, but to us mere mortals and our guests, a souffle is impressive). It tasts SOOOO good. You would think that with the white chocolate, dark chocolate and raspberry it would be cloyingly sweet but it's not. The second-best thing about this souffle is that there are no souffle collars to fuss with. The best thing about this souffle is that the entire thing can be made up ahead of time and kept in the refridgerator. As dinner concludes, pop them in the oven at 375F for 15-20 minutes.
Gentlemen: if you are looking for a dessert to serve to a lady that you are trying to impress, this is it.
This recipe is adapted from Fine Cooking's recent Chocolate issue. I have doubled the amount of vanilla, and I recommend using the finest vanilla extract you can find. I used Nielsen-Massey Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Extract. Regarding the unsalted butter: English and Eurpoean butters have a higher butterfat content, and you can really tell the difference.
White Chocolate Souffle with Raspberry Chocolate Sauce
Raspberry Chocolate Sauce:
1/4 cup fresh raspberries
3 oz Ghirardelli 60% cocoa semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 tablespoons European unsalted butter
3 large eggs
3 tablespoons flour
1/8 tablespoon iodized salt. (don't use kosher salt, the granuals are too big)
3/4 cup whole milk
6 oz Ghirardelli white chocolate chips
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
Additional butter and sugar for the ramekins
Put a pie pan in the freezer for several hours to chill. You are going to be pouring hot liquid into it so metal or pyrex are preferred.
lightly butter six 4.5 oz ramekins. Mine are 3 inches in diameter and 1.5 inches deep. Coat the inside of each buttered ramekin with granulated sugar. Invert and pour out the excess.
Puree the raspberries in a blender. Pour the pureed raspberries through a sieve into a small bowl, using a spatula to squeegee the liquid through and leave the seeds behind (discard the seeds).
In a double-boiler or small saucepan set in a larger pan of simmering water, combine the raspberry puree, semisweet chocolate chips, butter, and sugar. Stir frequently until melted together and smooth. Grab the ice cold pie pan out of the freezer and pour this mixture into it. Tilt the pan as needed to get the mixture spread evenly over the bottom surface of the pie pan. Return the pie pan to the freezer. When the mixture has set up, divide it into six equal portions and use your hands to form each portion into a little ball. Put the balls back into the pie pan and put the pan in the refrigerator.
Seperate the egg yolks from the whites (you will need both). The whites should go into a large clean bowl big enough to be used with your hand mixer (or put them in the mixing bowl of your stand mixer).
Combine the flour and salt in a saucepan. Add a small amount of milk and combine. You want a smooth paste. Then add the rest of the milk, combine, and place the saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly. When the mixture has thickened a bit (like a cream sauce, about 4 minutes), remove a bit of it from the saucepan, add it to the egg yolk,s and whisk gently. (This allows the yolks to warm up without cooking them). Add the yolk mixture back into the saucepan, cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly. When it is about the consistency of mayonnaise, remove it from the heat, place it into another bowl along with the white chocolate chips. Stir or whisk until the white chocolate chips are fully melted and combined. Add the vanilla. Set aside
Beat the egg whites in their own bowl( mentioned above). Add the cream of tartar until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in the sugar and continue meating until medium-firm peaks form.
Gently fold a heaping spatula load of egg whites into the white chocolate mixture, then add the remaining egg whites. Fold gently to preserve the air in the egg whites.
Take the chocolate balls out of the refridgerator. Place one in the center of the bottom of each ramekin. Fill each ramekin with the white chocolate/egg white mixture until it is no higher than level with the top of the ramekin. (1/8 inch below the top of the ramekin works well for me.)
At this point you can cover each ramekin with plastic wrap and put it in the refridgerator, awaiting dinner time.
When it is time for dessert, preheat the oven to 375F, remove the plastic wrap and pop them into the oven for 15-20 minutes, or until portions of the top have turned a light golden brown.
Serve immediately but warn your guests that they are still VERY hot. (The original recipe said to let them cool for a few minutes but I really don't understand that because the souffles will deflate.)